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After moving and assembling the baby grand by regular furniture movers, I played the piano and found that notes are sustained with or without pressing on the sustain pedal.

I believe they assembled back the pedals incorrectly underneath.

The movers denied any wrong doing and I can't blame them because they are not really piano movers. The move was Oct 31, 2022. And since I've been busy, I only got to try the piano this year in January and found the problem.

I don't have time and money to have tuners fix the problem so I'd like to fix it myself now. After move tune-up even much later.

Attached are 2 images underneath that show views from the left and right sides of the metal rods going up to the lever. Let me know if you need other views but I can only deliver after this weekend though.

Can anyone help me what you can notice is wrong so I can fix this myself. What tools are needed?

Thanks for the help.

mi7babygrand left view

right view

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    There’s a part of me that wants to suggest that not being able to afford piano movers or a tuner is part of not being able to afford to own a piano. A grand piano at that. If it’s a nice piano at all then you risk doing more harm than good by not having a pro look at it. Mar 16, 2023 at 0:17
  • First of all I've had this baby grand for30+ years. Its been moved 2x by non piano movers. The 1st time didn't have this problem. You are correct. All keys are sustained, with or without stepping on the pedal. As shown on photo with arrow, the lever goes up when pedal is pressed and back down when released. I read somewhere that pedal may not be connected to the damper inside the piano to the connection under the piano. I don't know where that is among the parts of the contraption involved. I called a piano tuner & he was very arrogant in scolding me for not calling piano movers when I moved a Mar 16, 2023 at 1:30
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    I would say that solving a mechanical problem without touching or seeing things moving with your own eyes is kinda hopeless. You have more chance trying to understand the way it should work yourself (like phoog is suggesting) than asking blind people in the internet probably !
    – Tom
    Mar 16, 2023 at 6:47
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    I'll say, if it were I, I'd definitely call in a professional! And try to find one who won't be arrogant and scolding. That's not a great way to win customers, even if he's right! But pianos need servicing regularly anyway, and especially after a move. I'd call someone even if it were working normally! Mar 16, 2023 at 14:40

2 Answers 2

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I can't really tell what's wrong from the pictures, but I can offer some advice to help diagnose the problem.

First, I understand from the question that all of the notes with dampers are affected, so the piano is behaving as if you're constantly stepping on the pedal. If that's not correct, stop reading and leave a comment explaining which notes are affected.

Second, if you're uncomfortable unscrewing and removing the pedal assembly and then replacing it then you should seek assistance from a handy friend, or just bite the bullet and call the piano tuner. The piano surely needs tuning anyway, and fixing the dampers is probably just a question of realigning something that is out of alignment.

Third, a likely cause for this condition is indeed that the pedal is assembled incorrectly. What does happen when you step on the pedal? Is everything moving? Does the pedal move as it normally does, along with the vertical rod and the lever shown in the picture? If they are not moving normally, try unscrewing the pedal assembly and moving the lever manually. If the dampers now work as expected, you can probably just put the pedal assembly back together carefully and everything should work as normal. Be certain to check that the vertical rod also slides relatively freely before you put everything back together.

Finally, if you remove the pedal assembly and find that manipulating the lever directly does not solve the problem, then it's likely that some lever or rod has fallen out of alignment during the move. (For example, the vertical wooden rod that extends upward from the wooden lever through the hole in the piano case may have fallen out of a socket at the other end, holding that piece in a higher position than it should and therefore keeping the dampers off of the strings.) If that is the case then it will probably be necessary to remove the action (keys and connected parts) to get at the internal mechanism. This isn't as hard as it sounds, but it's also not trivial. If you're a confident tinkerer, you might give it a go, but, once again, if you're planning to get the instrument tuned anyway, just go ahead and do that. The technician isn't likely to charge much to realign the mechanism.

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All we can say for certain is that the mechanism that connects pedal and dampers is stuck in the ‘dampers up’ position. Fortunately, it’s a fairly simple mechanism, and it should be possible by inspection to see what’s wrong. But if you can’t, I guess that after-move tuning will just have to be brought forward. At least we can be confident that re-setting the pedal mechanism will only be a trivial addition to the tuning job.

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